The Brooklyn Rail

MAY 2019

All Issues
MAY 2019 Issue



Fweep or ckkkk from
trees tall grasses shrubby clumps
loud chirrup or scratch-bell
scifi laser pew pew pew

at borders    between properties

But when I steal across the golf course lawn
no singers

live in lawn maybe earthworms
moles bugs voles nematodes but
no singers are going to live there and
get mowed. Or all of them got mowed.

An I was built to rip a
we apart?

remonstrable success. Remonstrable outcomes.

Laptop sticker:  "Kill your local rapist"  well he's
so likely to be your dad tho.
Kill him.

What nucleates sky ice
for cloud formation?
Plankton poop,
dirt-sized, caught up in mist.

Build heaven of excrement
that engines [v.] rain [n.].

In my mother's belly I'm a tramp
and her heartbeat presages my orgasm, judders my whole blood.
As awkward combinations unionize.
So please pursue discomfort across skin.


Do you tell people when you've
had a magnificent massive shit,
the kind that would
fill four or five strong condoms?
I wish for you a person you
can tell that to and they be glad.


Revisited "Bad priest & fat-breasted
suburban woman"

Now edges swelling toward coming
flesh toaster stuffed with hard oily pillow
a rotten sundown mouse   is elongating    dripping fur
shoved out of town    on soft and distance rail

Move the skin aside
and in the tent find
things to say and eat

As long as she thinks it’s
good it’s going to work


Catherine Wagner

Catherine Wagner's latest book, Of Course, is forthcoming in Spring 2020 from Fence. She lives in Cincinnati.


The Brooklyn Rail

MAY 2019

All Issues